COMMUNITY should be at the heart of improving our lives, according to the newest member of Northwich Town Council.

Cllr Lee Siddall was appointed as a councillor for the Winnington and Castle ward last month and in an exclusive chat with the Guardian, said how he wants to use his time in office to help instil a sense of community pride.

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After securing the required number of signatures, he was unopposed and appointed on to the council and May and is now focused on getting to work.

"It's about instilling pride in the town and getting people involved in doing things to improve the community," he said.

"I see it as a big responsibility to represent people and being mindful of what residents what.

"I just hope people would feel confident in phoning me up and telling me about things they want to see change.

"I'm very passionate about the area and am all about the community."

Cllr Siddall has always thrown himself into local initiatives, such as litter picks and his voluntary work with Northwich Community Support Group.

He said: "I quite like that famous JFK quote, where he says 'don't ask what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country'.

"It's just a case of changing the word country for community.

"I just want to try and get people out and about, meeting their neighbours.

"The vandalism we've seen recently, particularly with the trees in the town, isn't nice to see, and we want to take steps to change that.

"We want people to have more community spirit and to have more pride about the communities where they live.

"If you really cared about your community you wouldn't carry out these mindless acts of vandalism."

Northwich Guardian: Cllr Lee Siddall represents the Winnington and Castle ward on the town council

Cllr Lee Siddall represents the Winnington and Castle ward on the town council

Cllr Siddall said an improved sense of community would act as springboard to improving both attitudes and behaviour.

"It's about trying to nudge people in the right direction to do the right thing," he added.

"There used to be a time when I grew up that everyone knew who you were and knew your parents.

"And as a kid that would always act as a deterrent to stop you doing anything.

"I guess communities are not the communities they once were.

"People obviously used to take great pride in looking after their own streets and it would be nice if we could look to getting back to something like that.

"It seems now that some people are more clued up as to what they're entitled to rather than what their social responsibilities are."

As an organiser of community litter picks, the environment and protecting it for future generations is also high up on the new councillors agenda.

"If we can make things look a lot nicer, then people are less likely to litter and spoil it for others," he said.

"I'm looking forward to working with the likes of Transition Northwich to look after our rivers and wildlife.

"We need to make sure future generations have got nice places to go."